Thursday, May 31, 2018

Orthodox United Methodists

The word for the day is orthodox. I learned of how it is being used in the Methodist church from our Minister's wife. It is a much better term than conservative. Why is this the word of the day?  The United Methodist Church is facing some very tough decisions in the near future. Orthodox describes our local church and conference. The articles listed below represent a good summary of what has been going on since General Conference.

1. (of a person or their views, especially religious or political ones, or other beliefs or practices) conforming to what is generally or traditionally accepted as right or true; established and approved.

2. of the ordinary or usual type; normal.
synonyms: conservative, traditional, observant, devout, strict

The Un-tied Methodist Church

Seeing the Future

A Second Rise of Methodism

United Methodists Form Wesleyan-Covenant Association

Wednesday, May 30, 2018

Renegade Gospel

Chapter 6

Biblical Foundation 1 Corinthians 15:12-14

Opening Activity
1 Corinthians 15:3-6 and the quotation from N.T. Wright in the book
  1. What conclusions can we draw when we compare the amount of the four Gospels devoted to Jesus' birth with the amount devoted to the amount of the events leading up to his crucifixion and resurrection?
  2. Do you find this early testimony about Jesus' resurrection compelling? Why or why not?
  3. What else can you cite about the early years of the Christian movement that seem to you to be important clues about whether the Resurrection is real
Video Study and Discussion
  1. How does Slaughter differentiate between historical and scientific evidence?
  2. What is the significance of eyewitnesses to the Resurrection?
  3. Why does Slaughter say Jesus made Peter a leader of the young church?
  4. Why is the mustard seed such a good metaphor for faith?

Book and Bible Study and Discussion
Mark 9:14-29
  1. Faith and doubt seem to go together. In your own experience, is this true?
  2. What does Slaughter mean when he says the Resurrection defines the new possible? What does it mean that the impossible is the new possible?
  3. Consider examples of some people who defied conventional wisdom to make accomplishments that have contributed to human advancement. Some might call this thinking out of the box. What does it mean for Christians to think "out of the grave"?
  4. Christian faith seems to flourish in times and places where people face persecution and doubt? Why do you think this is?
  5. In your own day-to-day life, are most people with whom you interact Christians, of some other faith, or nonreligious?
Resurrection account in Luke 24:1-12
Walk to Emmaus Luke 24:13-35
Luke 24:36-43

Monday, May 28, 2018

United Methodist Church News

The Judicial Council has ruled in favor of allowing other petitions besides the one the liberal bishops were pushing. We need to pray for the Lord to guide people in writing petitions that will bring about His will for the church. Petitions are due on July 8th. We pray for God to help those writing them to follow His will, and get them in on time. 

Friday, May 4, 2018

Renegade Gospel Ch. 3

Session Goals
  • Examine the historical evidence and statements of skeptics and use the lens of science to explore the identity of Jesus
  • Explore Scriptures that reveal the power unleashed in a commitment to community
  • Examine our understanding of who Jesus is
  • Further deepen our commitment to journey with Jesus as disciples

Video Discussion Questions:
  • Who Is Jesus?
  • C.S. Lewis observed that we must decide if Jesus is a liar, a lunatic, or Lord. What reasons did Lewis give for asserting that Jesus must be identified in one and only one of those three ways? How do you respond to his assertion?
  • For you, what is the most compelling argument as to why God had to come in human form? What, if anything does suffering have to do with it?
  • Why does Slaughter say that Christianity is the one religion you can't do alone? What do you think he means in saying that shared brokenness becomes a strength?
  • In the video, a recovered crack addict named Lori tells her story. What can we learn from Lori's experience of recovery even including her relapse?
Bible Study Discussion Questions:
Luke 9:10-17
  • What do we learn in these passages about the power of multiplication?
  • What examples can you cite from your own experiences in community? Why is only a limiting word?
3 Parables in Luke 15: Lost Sheep, Lost Coin, Lost Son
  • In this parable, Jesus describes God as...
  • What does this parable tell you about Jesus? "If Jesus is God with skin on," what does the parable tell us about Jesus?
John 15:1-6
  • Jesus says those who abide in him will bear fruit. What does it mean to abide in him? How can you be a fruitful disciple?
  • Jesus says that the Father prunes the brances to make them bear more fruit What do you think he means by pruning? What are the implications for discipleship?
  • What happens to branches that do not bear fruit? What happens to a branch that is not a part of the vine? What does this mean for us?

Tuesday, May 1, 2018

Chapt. 1 Renegade Gospel... Thoughts

Charles Stanley's sermon, The Priority of Relationship Part 2 was a great one for me to listen to after reading chapter 1 in Renegade Gospel. I encourage to listen to it.
 In it, Stanley says, "Many churches are like a refrigerators, as cold as a cucumber because the hearts of the people are not pleading for God. They are not listening for God, they want to hear something that makes them feel good. God speaks the truth, not to make us feel good, but to penetrate us in order that we may deepen our loving relationship with Him. It's easy to use involvement in Christian activities as the barometer for determining a person's dedication to the Lord. While serving God is extremely important, doing things for Him follows a relationship with Him".
"God is more interested in our personal relationship with Him, than a thousand lifetimes of work for Him."

He uses Rev. ch 2:1-7 "The Priority of Relationship." in this sermon.

Monday, April 30, 2018

Renegade Gospel

Renegade Gospel by Mike Slaughter
Chapter One - Discovering the Rebel Jesus

Mark 1:21-28
John 5:1-9
Luke 17:11-19
John 2:13-16
Matthew 5:21-22; 27-28; 31-32; 40-42
Luke 9:23-24
Mark 10:17-22
John 6: 60-66
Luke 14:25-33
Matthew 20:1-16; 20-25
Matthew 22:34-40
Matthew 26:47-56

Sunday, April 15, 2018

Philippians Guide to Joy

Philippians life lessons, by Max Lucado.
The following are main points fromfrom chapter.
Philippians 4:8-13
"A healthy, God-honoring lifestyle begins with a healthy, God honoring mind-set.

Worrywarts need peace semicolon those who struggle with greed or envy need to learn the art of contentment.

Mental viruses are known as anxiety, bitterness, anger, guilt, shame, greed, and insecurities. They worm their way into your system and diminish, even disable, your mind. We call these DPT's colon destructive thought patterns.

A lifetime of healthy and holy thoughts would render anyone a joyful genius...

Christ is not a distant creator he is a next door savior.

Meditation is both described and prescribed in Scripture (Joshua 1: 8; Psalms 119:27). At the most basic level, meditation is simply focusing one's mind on a thought or a set of thoughts. It is chewing on an idea like a cow might chew its cud. It is letting our minds marinate in a certain idea. We all do this. Even worrying is a negative form of meditating- it is dwelling on possible bad outcomes. Paul is telling us here that the path to a joy-filled life of contentment and peace is by learning to meditate on what God says is true."